Democratic California Rep. Adam Schiff balked Sunday at reports that U.S. Attorney John Durham’s review of the Russian interference investigation is now a criminal probe.
The chairman of the House Intelligence Committee who has the lead on the impeachment inquiry, tried to suggest the probe was nothing more than an attempt by Attorney General William Barr to persecute President Donald Trump’s political enemies.
“You can assign good people to do an illegitimate investigation,” Schiff told ABC News’ “This Week with George Stephanopoulos,” as he suggested he won’t accept the results of such a probe.
“If these reports are correct and Bill Barr’s Justice Department is doing a criminal investigation of people who properly looked into Russian interference in our election … it means that Bill Barr on the president’s behalf is weaponizing the Justice Department to go after the president’s enemies,” Schiff said.
Although the congressman has repeatedly suggested without evidence that Trump had colluded with the Russians, the congressman suggested Sunday that if you “win an election you don’t seek to prosecute the losing side but this is what Bill Barr is seeking to do. He is demonstrating once again that he is merely a tool of the president, the president’s hand, not the representative of the American people.”
When reminded by the program host that Durham “is a very well-respected prosecutor,” Schiff argued that there needs to be a “public explanation for why this needs to be a criminal probe.”
The committee chairman also suggested that he won’t accept the results of Durham’s investigation because it occurred under the auspices of a Department of Justice under Barr.
“You can assign good people to do an illegitimate investigation. You can assign good people to investigate the president’s political rivals. It doesn’t mean that the investigation is any less tainted. This is tainted because of the motivation which is a political one to serve the president’s political interests.”
Reminded that he has “no evidence of that … whatsoever,” Schiff insisted “the evidence, I think, is pretty clear. The president has been calling … to investigate anyone who stood in his way and now what is Bill Barr doing, he’s doing an investigation of — a criminal investigation of some of the people responsible for this probe. So you can, I think, connect one dot to another.”
Author: David Krayden